Austria and Germany are set to square off on Tuesday from Ernst Happel Stadium in Vienna, where both teams will be looking to earn three valuable points towards eventually securing a berth in the 2014 World Cup.
The Group C European qualifying clash will be Joachim Low’s and the Germans’ second match of their campaign. They annihilated Faroe Islands 3-0 in their first qualifier to take an early three points to the top of the group.
For Austria, the upcoming meeting with Germany will signal the start of its bid to earn a spot in the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
Here is everything you need to know for Tuesday’s UEFA qualifying match between European neighbors Austria and Germany.
Where: Ernst Happel Stadium, Vienna, Austria
When: Tuesday, September 11 at 2:30 p.m. ET
Live Streaming: ESPN3.com
Biggest Storyline: Will Austria Contain Superior German Squad?
Austria has not qualified for the World Cup since 1998 in France. Since then it has missed out on three World Cup tournaments and has failed to earn a bid in eight out of the last 12 World Cups dating back to 1966.
The biggest storyline heading into Tuesday’s match is whether the Austrians can contain a superior German unit, and earn at the very least a draw, giving them a critical point to take into their matchup with Kazakhstan next month.
Player to Watch for Austria: Marc Janko
Veteran striker Marc Janko has 27 caps for Austria since 2006, and has put in 11 goals for his native country during that time.
At age 29, Janko still provides the Austrians with a legitimate scoring threat up front, and a player who surely won’t choke in big moments.
Janko’s biggest advantage is his size, at 6’6″ he can elevate and get his head on the ball. He scored five goals in 12 appearances for Porto last season.
Player to Watch for Germany: Mesut Ozil
Michael Steele/Getty Images
The 23-year-old German midfielder netted two goals against Faroe Islands on Friday, scoring both within 18 minutes of each other.
Ozil, who currently plays for Real Madrid in the Spanish La Liga, has netted 11 goals for Germany in only 40 appearances on the senior national team.
He scored twice against Austria during Euro 2012 qualifying last September.
Key Matchup: Austrian Defense vs. German Attack
Everyone knows that the Germans love to attack and score goals. On Tuesday, Austria will have to make sure that they are extremely tight at the back and in front of their net.
The Germans have already poured in three goals during qualifying and will again field the firepower necessary to put Austria away early.
The key for the home squad will be slowing Mesut Ozil and company in the midfield to avoid giving them chances in the final third.
What They’re Saying
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Austria coach Marcel Koller is keeping banged-up midfielder David Alaba out of the lineup for Tuesday’s showdown with Germany for one very clear reason (according to Winnipeg Free Press via the Associated Press):
Alaba won’t be added to the squad even if he gets fit just in time. That would make no sense.
Meanwhile, Germany is expected to be without the ultra-talented Bastian Schwensteiger for Tuesday’s match against Austria, according to Goal.com’s Doug Patient.
Fortunately for the Germans, they boast enough weapons to withstand a loss heading into their Group C qualifier.
Despite the Austrians playing at home and with tons of energy in front of their supporters, Germany will prove far too strong an opponent in such a meaningful match early on in the qualifying campaign.
Germany 3, Austria 1
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